Best Browser Games free-to-play in 2020

Some of the best titles you can play anywhere.

Image via Vennril

While console and desktop games have become the norm, browser games are still popular online. Some browser games can have immersive lore filled universes that only require an internet connection to join. You can take part in incredible adventures with your characters in stunning worlds. There are also browser games that are very simplistic but ridiculously fun. It is not challenging to sink several hours into these games while at work or school. There are thousands of well-made titles out there to choose from. There is a browser game of every genre developed by both indie developers and major gaming companies alike. Many veteran gamers may remember when Minecraft and Runescape were both entirely browser-based before moving partially or entirely to desktop.

The best free-to-play browser

Here are ten browser games to try out in your free time. All of these games are free-to-play but may include in-game expansions and items that can be purchased. Several of these games also require you to register an account to play.

Fallen London

Screengrab via Fallen London

Fallen London is a lot of things. It is a literary survival RPG based in an alternate Victorian-Gothic reality. The game is maintained by Failbetter Games, the same organization that developed Sunless Skies, Sunless Sea, and Dragon Age: The Last Court. If you are a fan of multiple-choice narrative games, then Fallen London will feel very familiar. The entire game is based around your choices as the main character of the narrative. Every decision you make will affect you in some way and change the direction of the story. It is straightforward to get immersed in the lore of the game as you build your character and work your way through the story. The game is frequently updated and expanded by the developers, with new storylines added fairly regularly. It also has a large dedicated fanbase that is pretty welcoming to newcomers.

Artix Entertainment Games

Screengrab via DragonFable

Artix Entertainment has developed several popular browser games. Almost all of the games developed by the company are open-world fantasy or sci-fi RPGs. More recently, they have delved into mobile apps and a desktop MMO, but the majority of their players still focus on browser games like AdventureQuest, MechQuest, and DragonFable. Each game features a large world to explore and hundreds of ways to customize your character. All of the games, except for WarpForce, receive regular updates improving graphics and adding more quests and events for players to take part in. Aside from the ever-expanding universe of the games, the developers also insert plenty of comic relief into every quest to keep their players entertained.

Skribbl.io

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Screengrab via Skribbl.io

Skribbl.io, like most .io games, is a free multiplayer competitive browser game. It is similar to Pictionary without the teams. Each round, a player is given a selection of prompts to draw. The other players in the game have to guess what is being drawn within a certain time limit. You earn points based on how quickly you get the right answer. The person with the most points by the end of the game wins. You can create private games for you and your friends and even create a unique list of drawing subjects for increased fun and difficulty.

AI Dungeon 2

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Screengrab via AI Dungeon 2

AI Dungeon 2 is unique for any game. The game uses AI to generate a unique text adventure written just for you. The game acts similarly to a storyteller game with the AI working as the gamemaster. Every choice changes the game and gradually creates a unique experience. You can choose any action you wish, and the AI will decide how it fits into the story and where it takes you next.

Card Hunter

Screengrab via Card Hunter

Card Hunter is a unique experience. The game combines elements from a lot of different genres, including tabletop RPGs like Dungeons & Dragons, and card battle games like Magic the Gathering. While the game does combine these genres into a unique experience, it also maintains a light-hearted tongue in cheek narrative that pokes fun at the games it is based on. The game is pretty easy to pick up on and does feature some multiplayer functions.

Catan Universe

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Screengrab via Catan Universe

The creators of the original Settlers of Catan board game have put a lot of work into spreading the game through every possible medium. This includes creating a web-based version of the game called Catan Universe. The game allows you to play multiplayer or against AI. If you are a fan of the game, you can also create an account and purchase expansion packs to play through unique scenarios. The game also offers a fullscreen mode, a comprehensive tutorial for people new to the game, and lets you create a custom 3D avatar. While this is a browser game, it feels like a desktop port of the classic board game.

Contre Jour

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Screengrab via Contre Jour

Contre Jour is a platformer inspired by The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. The game focuses on a blob named Petit, a reference to the book. The player moves Petit around by manipulating the environment. Players can change the elevation of the ground and move hanging tendrils to get Petit to the goal. Each level gets progressively more difficult as new mechanics are added, and the goal items become more difficult to reach. The game has numerous awards, both for general gameplay and its unique soundtrack.

A Dark Room

Screengrab via A Dark Room

A Dark Room is a text-based mystery RPG by Doublespeak Games. Like all text-based games going back to Zork, what happens in the story depends on your choices. You start off stoking a fire before moving on to gathering resources. Before long, you are building a hut. Aside from the text-based system, the game also incorporates roguelike elements and resource management. Just about every action you take will have some cost either in resources or time, so you will need to manage both wisely. When you first start the game, it seems very simple in design, but it grows in complexity and becomes more challenging as you play.

Slither.io

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Screengrab via Slither.io

Slither.io is very similar to the classic game of Snake. Unlike Snake, instead of trying not to run into yourself and other obstacles, you need to watch out for other players. You get dropped into a large but straightforward map as a small snake. The map is filled with glowing orbs for you to eat, the more you eat, the longer you get. As you travel, you will come across other players. If you run into another snake, you disappear, losing all of your progress and leaving behind orbs for other players to gobble up.

DarkOrbit: Reloaded

Screengrab via DarkOrbit: Reloaded

DarkOrbit: Reloaded is a space-combat MMO that mixes elements of insane shooters like Asteroids with space civilization games like EVE Online. The game uses simple point-and-click controls to move about the large universe. It is one of the most popular browser games currently available, with roughly 300 million users. When you start the game, you have to choose one of the three factions available to join. Your longterm goals are to upgrade your ship, manage your supplies, complete missions, and increase your rank in the game. As your rank increases, so does the rank of your faction. You can compete with other players in PvP or take on aliens in PvE combat.